Hamilton wants to be pushed to the limit

The Bolton News: Lewis Hamilton believes the current crop of Formula One drivers have it easy compared to drivers of yesteryear Lewis Hamilton believes the current crop of Formula One drivers have it easy compared to drivers of yesteryear

Lewis Hamilton believes Formula One has lost something because of what technology and officials allow star drivers like Sebastian Vettel to get away with.

Mercedes star Hamilton is full of admiration for Ayrton Senna, who drove at a time in the late 1980s when the sport was less technical and more dangerous.

Hamilton told the Daily Mail: "If you watch Sebastian Vettel now he always runs over the Astroturf and over the kerb a little more than he should, going beyond the white line, which you're not actually allowed to do but they let you get away with it. In Senna's day, if he went one foot over that kerb, it would be grass and he would spin, and be penalised."

He added: "He would be right on the limit, rather than over the limit - and I respect that style of driving more.

"Now you can go beyond and get back because modern tracks have run-off areas. They used to be gravel. Hit that, and your car was damaged or stuck. Now you can push beyond, go wide and come back on.

"When you do and get away with it, you think, 'Great', but the reason I love street circuits like Monaco is there is no room for error and if you make a mistake, you pay. I don't want people to pay by being hurt, but losing time, or having the car stop; that's what racing is about.

"That's why you've got to have so much admiration for the guys who did it back then."

Hamilton believes driving alongside the likes of Senna would have brought out the best in him.

"I like that it's safer now but the cars then were raw - they had a gear stick," he said. "You watch Senna at Monaco and he's one-handed most of the time, over-steering. That's really cool. So cool.

"I think that would have brought a lot more out of me, the time before the driver aids came in. Now it's so technical, sitting around talking about hydraulic dip. I have tons of buttons - 26 on a Mercedes steering wheel - and to understand and utilise them all is a science in itself."

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